How to Lose Weight and Gain Muscle
How do we lose weight and gain muscle? This is a question for all athletes that need to be lighter on their feet, but keep their strength. The answer to this is not going to be analyzed with training, but with nutrition. Although training can help speed the process, it will be adequate nutrition that will spark the fire for losing weight. The process of losing weight can be a frustrating one, but with proper guidance I will help you on how to lose weight and gain muscle.
The 3-Step Approach on how to lose weight and gain muscle
- The first area to address is actual weight loss. What is going to put me in a constant weight loss state?
- The second area to address is maintaining/gaining muscle. How much/what do I need to eat to gain muscle?
- Lastly, nutrition timing! This is key!
Eating in a calorie deficit is the first thing you need to do to start losing weight. A caloric deficit is any shortage in the amount of calories consumed relative to the amount of calories required for maintenance of current body weight.
So how does one calculate their daily calorie intake? A general rule of thumb is to take your body weight and multiply it by 15. For example, If I weigh 200lbs my calorie intake would be 3,000 calories a day. There are other variables to consider, such as, your activity level throughout the day. The thing to remember though is that it doesn’t need to be an exact number; just an estimate.
The next thing you want to do is to subtract at least 500 or more calories off that number and use it for your new daily calorie intake. Without adding activity level, this will result in losing 1 pound a week. You can add more to your calorie deficit, but if you are wanting to keep/gain muscle it is a bad idea. I will explain why in the next step.
Too much weight loss at one time can result in muscle loss. The best way to avoid this is to keep your protein intake high. If you can maintain a high protein intake, along with a calorie deficit, you will be losing weight and gaining muscle. What’s better than that?
How much protein is enough to be considered high? The answer depends on your body. The old rule for protein was for every pound of body weight, then add a gram of protein. Recent research has suggested that all that protein isn’t necessary to build muscle anymore, in fact, it can be harmful. Anywhere between .7 – 1.0 should be plenty amount of protein to make substantial strength gains. For example, if I weigh 200 lbs, then I should consume anywhere from 140g – 200g of protein. I recommend that if you are doing strenuous lifting (High weight, Low rep) to eat towards the 200g mark. If you are doing more endurance type of training (Low weight, High rep), then I recommend the 140g area.
The best way to take full advantage of this is to space out your meals evenly. A good rule of thumb is to eat about 20g-30g every two to three hours, depending on your daily protein intake. Our bodies can only digest so much protein at one time. Too much protein at once can be harmful to your body, especially the kidneys.
- 7 A.M. 30g of protein
- 9:30 A.M. 20g of protein
- 12 P.M. 20g of protein
- 3:00 P.M. 30g of protein Pre-Workout Meal
- 5:30 P.M. 40g of protein Post-Workout Meal
- 7:30 P.M 20g of Protein
- 9:30 P.M. 20g of Protein
There are many different ways that you can play around with your protein intake. A lot of people have different times they like to eat, but I have found that the most crucial times come in pre and post workouts. (Or your most active period of the day) If you are having trouble adding protein to your diet, click here!
This transformation happened within 2 months. I used the diet above, that consisted of having a calorie deficit along with high protein.
Start weight: 180
End Weight: 167
Diet: Always under 2,200 calories with at least 130g of protein a day. 140-180 ounces of water a day.
Training: I was boxing 4-5 days a week for cardio. and lifting weights twice a week. Comment below if you would be interested in a blog post of the training!
This ” How to lose weight and gain muscle ” post should have given you some pretty good insight on how to approach nutrition. There is not just ONE way to approach training and dieting. There are so many different things that you can do to obtain your athletic body. The most important thing is to set a goal and have the ambition to obtain that goal. I hope that you have found this information somewhat helpful and maybe you learned something new! Please check out my nutrition page if you are still a little confused on nutrition by clicking here.
If you have ant questions or concerns, please leave a comment below.